Facing Your Fishy Fears
Something we have heard time and time again since starting our blog is how some people are nervous around seafood. Typically speaking they don’t like ‘fishy fish’ and only eat white fish, salmon or fish fingers. Whilst the childhood favourites have a place in our hearts, we think this is a real shame. There is such a plethora of amazing seafood to enjoy that we are passionate about more people trying.
We’ve kept it simple, so from picky eaters to little ones trying seafood for the first time, you’ll be able to find something new to try. Here are our suggestions to get your family and friends swimming in the wider seafood pool.
Everyone loves fish and chips right? If not this blog probably isn’t for you. But gone are the days where you are limited to cod or haddock, more and more chippies are taking note of consumer attitudes, sustainability and are offering more options. Check out this list of top sustainable fish and chip shops in the UK.
If you’re cooking at home why not try coley or pollock? It’s a cheaper alternative, still a delicious white fish and is incredibly versatile. You can often find these at your fishmonger or in supermarket freezers. We use both for things like crispy fish tacos, where guests can add their own toppings depending on taste but has that crispy texture that people are familiar with. A crowd pleaser for sure.
A real divider on the seafood front are cockles, winkles and whelks that you find on a trip to the seaside. Ok, we hear you that whelks might be a bit overwhelming for someone who is nervous around seafood (let’s set that as a goal for the future!) but we have found a way to serve cockles that can convert the biggest sceptic. We love using pickled cockles for acidity, dipping them in tempura and deep frying them. We serve this up as snacks at our supper clubs and they have always been so well received by our attendees. Even friends who have said they would never/have never tried cockles say they love them served in this way and it has made them see that it isn’t so scary after all! Get the tempura cockles recipe here.
Prawn toasts are the cornerstone to a good Chinese takeaway, there for mopping up the mix of flavours you have on your plate. Crispy white bread, crunchy sesame seeds and usually dipped in sweet and sour means there is plenty for people to not feel too scared by! But a good prawn toast needs to feature quality seafood, that offer a sweetness to the dish.
Serve them up alongside some egg fried rice, your favourite Chinese dish and put a tower of them in the centre of the table and watch the crowd dig in.
Branching out at Breakfast
Christmas is coming and supermarket shelves are being stuffed with smoked salmon ready for brunch. Smoked salmon is a staple on the breakfast plate and it is delicious, but can be a little overused. Even in restaurants, it will likely appear on every breakfast menu. We say it’s time to branch out. A great breakfast alternative to impress guests is a kedgeree. Try this great recipe that uses brown shrimp- spicy, packed with fresh herbs, delicious prawns and of course a soft boiled egg. Delicious!
Whilst we haven’t completely turned our back on this brunch staple, we like to supplement ours for cured or smoked trout. Sadly neither of us are lucky enough to have our own smoker, so we normally pick this up in shops. However, it’s incredibly easy and fun to cure your own fish at home. Doing this yourself also allows you to play with flavours. In the past, we’ve tried mango vodka, dill, beetroot and gin. It might seem daunting but this overnight treat is easy, impressive and tastes beautiful. Get our recipe for cured trout here.
We hope these three ideas have given you some inspiration to mix things up in the kitchen and at your local chippy or restaurant. If you want more recipes, tips for shopping, preparing and eating out please check out our website gillsgillsgills.com. Happy eating!